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7 Facts I Wish I Knew When I Began Working for a Wage

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How time flies! It’s been close to two decades now since the day I launched my own special revolution. I mean the day I made the life-changing decision to leave public sector employment and become my own boss.

Well, these many years down the road, I have experienced so much to convince me that one can make better use of one’s employment status right from the onset to transform one’s entire life in amazingly positive ways.

If only I had known these facts right from the beginning while still working for wages! Mark you, I’ve got no regrets and I’m not complaining. I’m only putting these facts your way if you’re still a wage earner so you can take a cue from them and, hopefully, do something really awesome with your life.

1.  A salary or wage can be turned into business capital.

Trust me, the day you discover and make good use of this fact is the day your personal finances will begin to experience a positive turnaround. If you wish to find out more about this subject, just read my post on how to make your salary bring you financial independence.

2. It is a total waste to restrict oneself to a single 9-to- 5 job.

The truth is that the knowledge and skills we acquired from school are worth much more than the paper certificates on which we tend to place too much value. If only you could step out and find a way to apply your knowledge!

Learn to use your free, out-of-work time profitably. There is too much wastage in this particular area.

You can do this by rolling up your sleeves to start a side business with those skills. Do not allow them to stay idle just because your current employer doesn’t seem to have any use for them.

3. A highly educated wage earner has no excuse for being unable to save.

I’ve come to see people with the barest level of formal education or none at all accumulate substantial savings from their very small incomes and use such to transform their financial situation in ways that many wage earners can only dream of.

The question I keep asking myself is this: If they can do it, then why not those of us who waste no time to remind everybody around of our academic credentials?

4. One can never earn an income large enough.

I could remember the days we would all suddenly have this great expectation that the next promised pay raise was going to perform an everlasting miracle in our lives.

I’m sure you’re familiar with this feeling. But it never works the magic, does it? It is no secret that most wage earners find their financial situation worsen soon after receiving a raise. Many factors account for this paradox but I will reserve them for another post.

The simple lesson is that if you cannot prudently manage what you earn now, you will do much worse with higher pay.

That’s a fact.

5. The lower the income, the more pressing the need to begin to invest.

Low incomes, not high ones, are the best reason to begin to put your money at interest or profit. You do this so that you can make your financial future look brighter than it is right now.

If you decide to consume everything because you think it is too small to devote part of it to a side business, you will remain in the same uncomfortable situation for a very long time. That is, if not for the rest of your life. I

6. The people who are eager to help you to use up your money today will soon forget how good you were to them.

That is why you need to take care of your own interests while doing your “Father Christmas thing”.

And this is especially so if you happen to have my kind of heart. These days, I’m no longer as naive as I used to be so I’ve learned to distinguish between selfishness and self-preservation. I still frown upon selfishness but I’ve come to appreciate self-preservation too!

Never forget the difference; if not, your naive kindness will send you into misery from which you may never recover.

7. Youth does not last forever.

It is tempting to have the so-called good life with all your earnings believing that the earth has stopped rotating on its axis. It hasn’t.

As each day goes and another night comes, your body clock will also be ticking away gradually but steadily.

It is wise to stop trying to impress others or compete with them. Manage your salary in ways that can prepare you for the greater responsibilities that come with age.

It is said that if you want to know the road ahead, ask those who are on their way back. I may not be too old but I started early, going by my local African standards. So I’ve experienced enough for you to take seriously what I’m telling you.

Learn from these revelations. I strongly believe you will do well as a wage earner in these early years.

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